Outdoor Living

As I’m sitting here at the dining room table to write this post, I take a look around and I feel like the apartment walls are closing in on me. I’m surrounded by stuff. Stuff without homes. Those 2’x2′ canvases that I picked up at the thrift store for .50 a piece (a total steal of a deal). Christmas lights I still haven’t put away (I know). Wroght iron railing I picked up at the flea market last weekend (just you wait and see).
Stuff = clutter and clutter = apartment walls are closing in on me ala Princess Leia in the trash compactor in that one Star Wars movie. #nerdalert
We’ve officially run out of room people. The cabinets are full. The drawers are stuffed. All these things…this stuff without homes is driving me bonkers. So until I pretty up those canvases that are totally stuck in another era into some beautiful wall art, or figure out how to safely secure these heavy railings to the wall, here they sit. Smiling at me and suffocating me all at the same time. 
I need space. And then it dawns on me. The answer has been in front of me this whole time. Literally.
Sitting here at the dining room table, the view directly in front of me is that of our patio. I remember while apartment hunting over a year ago that the patio on this apartment layout was one of the things we oohed and awwed over when we first saw it. It spans the entire length of our living room and our master bedroom. It boasts a full size washer/dryer in the laundry closet and still has feet to spare with gorgeous California views of palm trees and bright blue skies. By apartment patio standards, it’s massive! But as I sit here, I realize just how little we’ve utilized this available living area. And it makes me sad.
Our patio has the potential to be additional living space, a place to enjoy dinner on those warm summer nights, a place where I can go to escape all the stuff, heck…it can even be a pseudo office, because I don’t really have a desk or a place to blog. It doesn’t just have to be the place where I go to do laundry and die (kiddingnotkidding). The only source of natural light into the main living areas of our apartment is the sliding door that leads directly to our patio which has never ever been particularly esthetically pleasing to look at.
Seeing as we just settled on another year here at the very least, and with summer just around the corner, now’s the perfect time to amp up this space and use that once neglected square footage to maximize on our livable real estate sorta speak.
I’m so excited to take on this little patio makeover and see what I can come up with. As always, I’ll be DIY-ing my way through and ballin’ on a budget. But before we dive head first, how about a few little before pictures to see what we’re working with, yeah?

And from the other direction…

Complete with leftover barstools from our previous apartment when we actually had a bar, my makeshift spray paint/stain table, and cat condo for our sweet Zurgy who likes the view out here from way up high.

Inside those double doors is our laundry closet. 
Ugh. So bad. This is getting a makeover of it’s own because well…it totally needs one and I’m totally embarrassed by it!
The before shots are always so, so bad! But hey…at least we can clean our undies, right?!

So there it is…not much to look at now, but it’s got great potential and a lot of room to work with. I’ve already made a little progress out here and I’m loving it already even in it’s unfinished state.
Maybe I’ll even invite you over for some margaritas afterwards to break in the new patio! Sound like a plan?

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